The UK Hydrographic Office (UKHO) has announced that it will no longer be producing paper versions of its charts, and instead will be focusing on digital charts.
The process of moving completely to digital will take until 2026 with paper production gradually phased out. Alongside this, UKHO will be providing digital alternatives to those that would usually use the paper products.
The decision by UKHO comes due to more users tending to use digital products and services for navigation. This has been accompanied by a drastic decline in demand for traditional paper charts.
‘The decision to commence the process of withdrawing from paper chart production will allow us to increase our focus on advanced digital services that meet the needs of today’s seafarers. As we look to the future, our core purpose remains the safety of shipping operations and delivering the best possible navigation solutions to achieve that.’ Said Peter Sparkes, chief executive of the UKHO.
‘We understand the significance of this announcement, given the distinguished history of the UKHO’s paper chart production and the trust that mariners have placed in ADMIRALTY charts over the generations.’